For us, Quality Assurance isn’t so much a process as a way of life. As users ourselves we know that when working at height, one’s safety system has to be up to the task, no if‘s or but’s, compromises or doubts as any failure could have catastrophic consequences. When working in an extreme environment you need to be focused on the job not worrying whether the gates on your connectors are going to stick.
In general, equipment fails as a result of misuse. It’s one thing meeting a standard or ‘norm‘, but quite another to ensure that the ultimate strength of each individual product is at least as high as both it’s rated strength and the requirements of a standard. At DMM we strive to build in sufficient reserves to be sure that each product delivers when put to the ultimate test. We achieve this through stringent controls at each stage of production.
Each operator is highly trained in the use of Statistical Process Control systems and on top of all the routine tests we run 3 sigma rating controls on each batch. Since all safety critical processes are carried out on site we are in a position to take appropriate preventative and corrective action immediately.
We are accredited to ISO 9001:2008 & article 11b certification (EU directive 89/686/EEC) . All products are CE certified and many are certified to CAN/CSA Z259.12(2011), ANSI Z359.12(2009) NFPA 1983:2012 and NATO.
Statistical Process Control
The statistical process control system that we have implemented over the years enables us to have absolute control over each individual stage of the production process. We then have a system of ongoing batch testing which monitors and ensures that our product strength is maintained and exceeded. Every machine operator carries out routine checks and measurements to ensure that their operation stays within its pre-defined tolerance levels.
CE Marking and Product Conformance
The CE marking process is known as Type Examination and is an important supplement to our Quality Management System. In line with the requirements of European Union Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Directive 89/686/EEC all products designed and manufactured by DMM which are classified as PPE are independently type examined and tested to the relevant European Standard for Industrial Safety and Mountaineering. Only after meeting the requirements of the PPE Directive and the relevant European Standard are we allowed to mark 0120CE (the “CE ” mark) on our products.
ISO 9001:2008 compliance and CE marking/product conformance are monitored by CEN (Committee for European normalization. Notified Body No. 0120 (SGS UK Ltd., Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset, UK ). It is a legal requirement that we maintain our Quality Management System as part of the PPE Directive “CE ” marking process.
Statistical Quality Control
DMM were the first company to use a “3 Sigma” Statistical Quality Control (SQC ) technique to establish and monitor the strength ratings marked on products.
Meeting the standards is one thing, but our philosophy at DMM is to continue to improve the strengths of our products to exceed these requirements where possible. Using test data derived from destructive testing samples at the design stage, we can set the rated strength of the product with ‘3 standard deviations’ in reserve. This gives greater security in situations which might not be reflected in the standards but may happen in non-laboratory or misuse conditions.
Batch production means that components stay together throughout the manufacturing process from the moment the raw material is issued from the stores to the moment they pass through to final inspection. This ensures complete traceability from the purchase order for the raw material used through to when the product goes into our finished product stores.
Investors in People
DMM were the first manufacturing company in Wales to be registered to the II P standard (July 1992). In December 2006 we also surpassed all target requirements set out in to the latest version of this important standard. The Investors in People award is, as it’s name suggests, people orientated and its main objectives are:
(a) to develop strategies to improve the performance of the organisation through its people
(b) to ensure that the organisation takes action in order to improve its performance through its people and
(c) to evaluate the impact of this investment in people on the performance of the organisation.
II P is more than just a training system, the II P system is a key mechanism that helps us to target areas for improvement in all aspects of the business.
One of our continuous goals is to reduce our environmental footprint both locally and globally. Our Environmental Policy has been recognised by the Welsh Assembly Government as being the best in Wales for any manufacturer. We are committed to:
- Maintaining 100% recycling of our product
- Reducing our energy consumption
- Reducing emissions from our factory site
- Increasing the recycling of production, administrative and distribution by-products
- Make a positive contribution to sustainable development